"Speeding in a work zone" in Nevada
(NRS 484B.130)

People ticketed for speeding in a work zone in Nevada face double fines. So whereas exceeding the speed limit in Las Vegas normally carries a $205 penalty, speeding in a work zone would up the fine to $410. 

As long as no one was injured, it is often possible to reduce citations for speeding in a work zone to a non-moving violation with no demerit points. The most important thing is that drivers not ignore their tickets because a Nevada judge will issue a bench warrant for their arrest.

In this article our Las Vegas traffic ticket attorneys answer frequently-asked-questions about speeding in a work zone in Clark County and throughout Nevada, including defenses, punishments, demerit points, record seals, and more. Click on a topic below to jump directly to that section:

If you have been injured by a vehicle that sped in a work zone in Nevada, contact our Las Vegas personal injury attorneys to learn more. You may be eligible for large compensatory damages.

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Nevada speeding ticket fines double in work zones.

1. What are the laws for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Like it sounds, speeding in a work zone means to exceed the speed limit in a construction area. Note that speeding in a work zone is not a separate misdemeanor offense from speeding. Rather, it is an added penalty for the underlying speeding charge. 

In order for an area of road to become a work zone in Nevada, government workers (or contractors) must erect three things:

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  1. A sign located before the beginning of such an area stating “DOUBLE PENALTIES IN WORK ZONES” to indicate a double penalty may be imposed pursuant to this section;
  2. A sign to mark the beginning of the temporary traffic control zone; and
  3. A sign to mark the end of the temporary traffic control zone.

Note that Nevada law also levies extra penalties for speeding in a "temporary traffic zone," which do not have the same sign requirements as work zones. Instead, temporary traffic zones are either:

  • Pursuant to an emergency which results from a natural or other disaster and which threatens the health, safety or welfare of the public; or
  • On a public highway where the posted speed limit is 25 miles per hour or less and that provides access to or is appurtenant to a residential area.[1]

2. How do I fight charges for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

It is rare that speeding ticket defendants have to fight the charges on the merits since most traffic matters settle pretty quickly to the defendant's satisfaction. But in case things do progress to litigation, two common defenses to Nevada charges of speeding in a work zone are:

  1. No work zone. If the road did not have the proper signage mandated by law, then the driver had no notice that it was a work zone and should not be penalized for speeding in a work zone.
  2. No speeding. Maybe the cop's speed radar was malfunctioning, or the speed limit was higher than the cop realized. Either way, the defendant committed no crime.

In building a defense, the driver's attorney would try to compile surveillance video, photographs, and eyewitnesses to help show that the driver was not speeding in a school zone and that the state's evidence is too insufficient and unreliable to sustain a guilty verdict.

Note that a lack of signs does not necessarily relieve a driver of criminal liability if the speeding caused $1,000 or more in property damage or injury to a construction worker.

3. What are the penalties for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

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The fine for speeding in a work zone is twice the amount of speeding in a non-work zone.[2]

4. Can I get a charge for speeding in a work zone reduced to a non-moving violation in Las Vegas, Nevada?

It is very possible, especially if the driver does not have a history of traffic tickets. Having an attorney is usually the best bet for getting moving violations reduced or possibly dismissed.

5. How many demerit points will speeding in a work zone put on my driver's license in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Predictably, the Nevada DMV puts more demerit points on a person's license the faster they speed:

Miles per hour (mph) above the speed limit in Nevada

Nevada DMV Demerit Points

1 – 10 mph

1

11 – 20 mph

2

21 – 30 mph

3

31 – 40 mph

4

41 or higher mph

5

Demerit points are not forever. They remain on driver's licenses for only one (1) year before disappearing. But having twelve (12) or more demerit points will results in a six (6) month driver's license suspension. So people with speeding tickets should consider trying to get them reduced to a non-moving violation, with carries no demerit points.[5]

For people whose licenses have already been suspended, it may be possible to get the license reinstated by having a DMV Hearing. A DMV hearing is like a trial, and there is an administrative judge who determines whether the person's license was wrongly suspended. As with any judicial proceeding, people are encouraged to have an attorney appear for them at a DMV hearing.

People with a suspended license are advised not to press their luck and drive anyway. Driving on a suspended license is a misdemeanor in Nevada that carries up to six (6) months in jail and/or up to $1,000 in fines. [6]

6. Will speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada increase my car insurance premiums?

Yes. Consequently, anyone charged with speeding in a work zone should consider trying to fight the ticket in pursuit of a charge reduction or dismissal.

7. Do I have to do traffic school if I get cited for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Usually no. But if the defendant wants to get the speeding charge reduced to a non-moving violation, doing traffic school may be the only way to go. Non-moving violations are much better to have than tickets for speeding in a work zone because non-moving violations carry no demerit points.[5]

8. What happens if I ignore my ticket for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

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The Nevada judge will issue a bench warrant. People with outstanding bench warrants risk getting arrested at any time, especially if they get pulled over for a traffic violation.

In order to get a judge to recall ("quash") a bench warrant, the defendant should hire an attorney to file a "motion to quash" with the court and appear at a court hearing. In most cases, the defendant should not have to appear in court at the hearing as long as he/she hires an attorney. 

In some cases, the Nevada DMV will suspend a person's driver's license for not showing up to court. When that happens, the defendant's attorney can ask the court for an "FTA (failure to appear) clearance" to get the license reinstated.[6]

9. How will speeding in a work zone affect my commercial driver's license in Las Vegas, Nevada?

The DMV imposes identical demerit point penalties on both a person's non-commercial driver's licenses as well as his/her commercial driver's license (CDL). So if someone pleads guilty to speeding 30 miles over the limit, the DMV will append three (3) points to the person's driver's license as well as three (3) points to the person's CDL. It makes no difference if the person was not driving a commercial vehicle at the time of the speeding.

When a CDL holder gets a traffic ticket, he/she has to inform his/her boss within thirty (30) days of the citation being issued.[7]

9.1. CDL Suspension

Federal law considers it a "serious offense" for a CDL-holder to operate a commercial vehicle at 15 miles per hour or faster above the speed limit. A CDL-holder who commits two (2) such serious offenses within a three (3) year span will have their CDL suspended for 60 days. A third offense within a three (3) year period carries a 120 day CDL suspension.[8]

10. What happens to my out-of-state license if I sped in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

The consequences vary state-to-state. Seek out an attorney in the home state to learn how its DMV will penalize the person's driver's license for a Nevada traffic offense. In many cases, the home state DMV hands down the same demerit point penalty that if would if the offense transpired in the home state.

11. When can I seal a conviction for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

A Nevada conviction for speeding in a work zone can be sealed one (1) year after the case ends (not when the citation is issued). Convictions for non-moving violations also have a one (1) year statute of limitations for sealing.[9]

Note that if the defense attorney succeeds in getting the traffic case dismissed completely, then there is no waiting period to pursue getting a record seal. Whenever a case ends with no conviction, there is never a statute of limitations waiting period.[10]

12. Will I get deported for speeding in a work zone in Nevada?

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Exceeding the speed limit in a work zone is not a deportable crime. However, non-citizens who are ticketed for a traffic violation are still advised to meet with an attorney to help ensure that the case will not adversely affect their resident status. Read more about the criminal defense of immigrants in Nevada.

13. Should I fight my citation for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada or just pay the fine?

Although speeding in a work zone is a low-level offense, it can carry hefty fines, demerit points, and insurance hikes. Therefore, we recommend at least consulting with an attorney to discuss trying to get the charge dropped or at least lessened to a non-moving violation.

14. Can I go to trial for speeding in a work zone in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Yes, but speeding ticket defendants are not entitled to a jury trial, just a bench trial. The prosecutor tries to prove the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Then the judge (since there is no jury) will deliver a verdict of guilty or not guilty.

In Nevada, speeding ticket cases hardly ever go to trial since they are relatively minor charges: Eventually, the prosecutor and defense attorney come to a resolution that the defendant is happy with.[11]

15. Do I need an attorney if I sped in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Hiring private counsel is not mandatory, but it is encouraged: The D.A. usually extends more favorable plea deals to represented defendants than pro se (unrepresented) defendants. Attorneys have negotiation and litigation skills that increase the odds of getting a case dismissal or reduction.

Hiring an attorney makes life much easier for the defendant as well. Represented defendants do not have to come to court (barring extenuating circumstances), which is of vital importance to out-of-town defendants and tourists as well as to people who work during the day.

15.1. Las Vegas Justice Court "attorney sessions"

Twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays, Las Vegas Justice Court hosts "attorney sessions" where prosecutors and defense lawyers can meet to negotiate their traffic ticket cases. (Las Vegas Justice Court has jurisdiction over traffic citations that allegedly occurred within the unincorporated area of Las Vegas, which includes most of the Strip). These attorney sessions allow traffic tickets to be dealt quickly, whereas tickets in other courts may take weeks if not longer to reach a resolution.

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Call our Las Vegas traffic ticket attorneys at 702-DEFENSE for a FREE consultation today.

Traffic ticket? Call a Nevada criminal defense attorney...

If you have been ticketed for speeding in a work zone in Clark County or elsewhere in Nevada, contact our Las Vegas criminal defense attorneys for a FREE consultation at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673). We will do everything to try to get the citation dropped or lessened to non-moving violations so you pay the least, get no demerit points, and do no traffic school.

If you have been injured in a speeding accident in a work zone in Nevada, our Las Vegas car accident attorneys may be able to help get you a large settlement. Even if you partially contributed to the collision, you could still be eligible for compensation for your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and loss of future earnings. And unless we win you pay us nothing.

Legal References:

  1. NRS 484B.130; NRS 484B.600; Nevada DMV Violation Codes.
  2. NRS 484B.130; NRS 484B.600.
  3. NAC 483.500; NAC 483.510.
  4. NAC 483.764.
  5. See, e.g., Traffic School Information, North Las Vegas Municipal Court; Las Vegas Justice Court Traffic School.
  6. NRS 173.155; see, e.g. motion to place on calendar to quash the warrant at Las Vegas Justice Court; Nevada DMV Suspension.
  7. NAC 483.500; NAC 483.510.
  8. 49 CFR §383.51.
  9. NRS 179.245.
  10. NRS 179.255.
  11. Sixth Amendment.

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